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178              A SEARCH IN SECRET EGYPT
Another initiate of reputed foreign lineage was Moses; actually he was only half Hebrew, as one of his parents was Egyptian, "Moses was instructed in all the wisdom of the Egyptians," says the New Testament. What this sentence means —if it is to be taken literally—is that the projomdest wisdom of the Egyptians had been opened to him. Such could be nothing else than the knowledge imparted in the Mysteries.
Further, the same scripture declares that "Moses put a veil upon his face." We may receive some hint of the nature of this veil when we read further, that "until this very day at the reading of the Old Testament the same veil remaineth un-lifted" (Corinthians, 2nd Epistle). This indicates that it was no veil made of doth, but a veil upon matter communicated by words, i.e. upon knowledge. Therefore, the veil worn by Moses was really the pledge of silence and secrecy which he had taken during his initiation into the Mysteries.
This wisdom which Moses possessed, he learnt in the famous temple school at the city of On, named Heliopolis by the Greeks when they conquered Egypt (and called On in the Bible); a bygone city which once stood on a site a few miles north of Cairo. A sacred way stretched from the foot of the plateau upon which rested the Pyramids, across the plain to the sacred city of Heliopolis. Both the latter and Memphis—another vanished city within sight of the Pyramids—looked to the Great Pyramid as their highest shrine of the Mysteries. Heliopolis has gone, and the temple with it: the broken mud-brick walls of the town and the shattered pillars of the temples now lie a dozen feet below the sand and soil; all save the red granite obelisk which stood at its porch. That obelisk still stands— the same obelisk that Moses saw and passed and repassed many times—and it remains the oldest standing obelisk now left in the country. Other students who were attracted, like moths to the lamp of wisdom, to knock at the doors of this temple were Plato, the philosopher, and Herodotus, the historian. They, too, saw this obelisk, which stands in pathetic solitude to-day, a tall, bewildered monolith up to whose very base the peasants now till their fields.
It is brother to that other rugged obelisk which was set up by Thothmes HI, in front of the Temple of the Sun at Heliopolis, and which now overlooks the Thames on the Embankment at London; which, under the name of Cleopatra's Needle, still remains to remind the hurrying world of England's metro